Music – professional musicianship – Professional Project



‘Back Pocket’ Rhythm Section


Module: Professional Project PM611



Candidate Number: 1019464



Date: 22nd May, 2017.













This project mainly focuses on the creation of a rhythm section duo which can be booked for gigs and section work. A rhythm section duo (Bass and Drums) known as ‘Back Pocket’ that I created with a fellow student (Derick Lamb) will be extensively discussed in this paper. The paper brings out the main activities carried out by “Back Pocket” in terms of music, the different artistes that the brand interacted with and some of the events/gigs it performed. Through looking at existing literature, the paper outlines and discusses some of the rhythm sections that have been existent and how they carried out their activities. Also, it looks at the experiences of these rhythm sections and how they can be made into professional music carriers. Also, the paper tries to give guidance on how these rhythm duos are created, managed, and promoted for them to receive recognition from artists and artist managers to get gigs and session works. Through using the “Back Pocket” brand, this paper tries to bring out the experiences of rhythm sections in the music industry through an analysis of data collected from existing literature, one-on-one and online interviews.








Chapter One

1.     Introduction

In music, a rhythm section refers to a group of musicians within a band who perform instrumental music to provide a beat for the lead vocalist.  In most musical bands, the rhythm section is composed of a guitar, drums, electric bass and a keyboard or piano. The players of these musical instruments play a great role because they are the ones who define and dictate the rhythm and harmonic components of the music being played which on the other hand brings out the style and unique attributes of the composition or song. In the case of the “Back Pocket” band, there are two musical instruments, drums played by me and the bass played by my fellow student, Derice Lamb.

The formation of this rhythm section duo was mainly inspired by our love for funky basslines and groove with bands such as Tower of Power, Parliament, Earth Wind & Fire among others. Further inspiration for this project also comes from legendary groups for instance The Funk Brother and the Muscle Shoals. Also, we have played for many years together at the BIMM and as such we have a better understanding on the working of our main instruments. Rhythm systems have been there over the years with the only variance being in the instruments constituting them which varied depending on the era and style they were being played. For instance, in the 1940s, most jazz rhythm sections were characterised by small drum sets, an upright bass, and a piano. Rhythm sections of recent-day Afro-Cuban jazz mainly have drum sets and hand percussions.

Because of these variance in the instruments used for achieving certain beats and rhythms, there is need for musicians to consider rhythm sections with regards to the role of instruments. In addition, musicians should also realize and appreciate that a single musical instrument can be used to achieve multiple roles in a band. What this means is that a musical band might have just a guitar but it can be used to play lead guitar parts and rhythm guitar parts.

1.1. Role of Drums in a Rhythm section


















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